The University of Oxford is the oldest university in the English-speaking world and the second-oldest university still in operation. Even though there is no foundation date, there is evidence of teaching that dates back as far as 1096.Show more
I loved the tutorial system characterising teaching at the University of Oxford. This highly personalised and individual form of teaching means you can quickly progress and develop in your learning, acquiring new skills and knowledge at a very high pace. Moreover, the highly intensive nature of a degree at course really prepares you for many high flying jobs in a vast array of sectors.View more
Living up to its reputation of academic rigour, Oxford can be a challenging place to study at times, as much of the work is done independently. As a history student, I do not receive a lot of contact hours. I knew this would be the case before I attended, but it still took me a while to adjust to doing all my work myself and then attending weekly tutorials in order to discuss completed work.
Nevertheless, it goes without saying that having access to experts in your field makes studying here worth the money and the time, and the hard workload really helps you develop to the best of your potential. My experience with several tutors has almost always been positive, and they genuinely want to help you learn.
The beautiful libraries and other buildings also make the city a motivational and comfortable place to work. One of the most unique things about Oxford is its collegiate system, which means you live in smaller, tight-knit communities, but also have better access to academic and financial resources right where you live.
The most important thing to do when considering applying to Oxford is to research colleges, as your choice truly does shape your time there. Some colleges have poor kitchen facilities, which forces you to buy meals in the hall, which, despite being subsidised, can be expensive. Some colleges also have less accommodation, meaning that they may not be able to provide a room for you for the duration of your degree. This can be important since private housing in Oxford is sometimes expensive.
All in all, college life is exciting and much of the social activity revolves around these communities. The small size of these colleges means it is easy to get involved in all sorts of societies, as well as drive change within these institutions. Although attending a university with a reputation for being steeped in tradition and elitism can seem daunting, there genuinely is a welcoming atmosphere for everyone and an ability to make your college or university what you want to make it.View more
The teaching I have experienced at Oxford is brilliant. Tutors seem to really care that you make progress and are satisfied with your studies, and the course is tailored to individual students- my weekly essays could be on whatever I wanted, within a literary time period, and there was a great deal of freedom in coursework.View more
Theology at Oxford is a stimulating and challenging course which I would recommend. There is a great breadth to this degree which means that you can take the path which interests you.
As with any Oxford degree, I would just highlight that it’s full-on and demands a lot of you. This can take its toll on your mental health and, as much as Oxford is trying to combat this image, it does favour the rich and privileged. It’s an expensive city to live in.View more
I had a lovely time here- the academic support was second to none. It’s a beautiful city. 10/10 would recommend. Would study again!
Medicine here is a split degree and it’s got a great academic foundation before you head into the wards!View more
Studying under the Faculty of Education, University of Oxford, I also enjoyed immersing myself in the atmosphere I couldn’t find anywhere else. It’s a place that gives me so many inspirations and enlightenment. The staff is also friendly and willing to listen and respond to our requests. A very valuable experience!View more
As a Mexican under a government scholarship, I was very conscious about making a choice that would be both beneficial to me and my country. When I chose Oxford, I was intent on becoming a bench scientist and return to do research and teaching in Mexico. But my stay in Oxford opened a whole new perspective for me. I learned how much graduate scientists can contribute to research in industry and how much more value we are economically outside of the lecture halls. With my scientific credentials, a flawless command of English and a cosmopolitan perspective I found myself back in the workforce in no time after four years out doing my degree, and with a significant raise, and the promotions have not stopped since. Contrary to what people may think, the industry does appreciate having graduated from top-tier universities in their workforce, even if they will not be working to get themselves a Nobel price.
My stay in Oxford could not be better. I had the opportunity to live in a very congenial college, Hertford, and serve in the student’s bodies for the four years I was there. That gave me my first taste of politics and made me realize how important it is for everybody to be involved with our surroundings from a social and political perspective in order to enact the changes we believe are important. I made some of the best friends I ever had and completely change me for the better.
From the professional point of view, even if I did not follow on the research pathway that I started, the abilities to develop as a problem solver have proven invaluable in the different assignments I have had in the pharmaceutical industry and will surely aid me as I progress in my career.
I had a great time at Oxford. The facilities were excellent, with nice food available in Hall and big sports grounds for different colleges a short cycle out of the city centre.
The professors were usually very good, and I had a lot of stimulating discussions in tutorials, though occasionally essays were unmarked or returned late.
I really enjoyed the college atmosphere, and found my college a very good place to settle and live for three years.View more
Oxford University has an international reputation for academic excellence, and I can confirm this to be the case.
My course comprises seminars of around 10 students and even smaller tutorials – intense discussions normally based on written work submitted in advance. These professors are some of the world-leading experts in my subject – 19th century France.
One thing you can expect is intensity. With such small classes, there is nowhere to hide if you have not done the requisite reading, and on a more positive note, there are unbeatable opportunities to ask academics specific questions about an essay.
Oxford, like Cambridge and Durham, has a collegiate structure. Whether this suits you or not depends on personal preference, and of which college you decide to apply to. Most people think all colleges are the same – however, some have a tendency to attract certain ‘types’ of students. It really pays to do your research beforehand.
Living in college makes it very easy to make friends, but can feel a little insular. Most students decide to live out after their first year, but some colleges are large enough to allow students to live in college for the duration of their degree. One the whole, Cambridge colleges are much larger and fewer students live out.
This decentralised system means it is important to research each college specifically. Does it have new accommodation? Do you have to pay for laundry? What are the scholarships and bursaries like?
That said, all students at Oxford have worked hard to get there and many colleges share fun traditions, such as formal dinners. Oxford itself is a beautiful city and large enough to provide a sufficient range of shops, cinemas, sports facilities.
One note of caution: please choose your course wisely! Last term, I chose a module that had no lectures, seminars, or tutorials, and I was the only student enrolled on the course! I had to do all my own research and create my own bibliography, with almost no support.
This term, however, I have chosen a more popular module with a regular structure of contact hours, which I am really enjoying.
In short, it really pays to do your research beforehand.View more
The weekly essays might be stressful but by the end of the year you will come across numerous subjects. I believe that you learn not only how to work better but also how to conduct a good research. The tutor or supervisor is always a helping hand and this personal contact with them was a new experience for me.
Apart from the lectures, weekly seminars are organized, open to all students, usually by PhD students, on any subject of your interest (from Roman Archaeology to a Barbarian Seminar or a Linear B seminar). the community is great, very helpful, and all the libraries very well equipped.
the only disadvantage is the lack of postgraduate lectures. Master students (apart from their personal tutorials) attend the quite simplified lectures of the undergraduates. Apart from that, their “progress” is almost exclusively based on their personal studying.
For someone who can handle stress, the overall result is surely beneficial.